4 reviews liked by mspasta

I’ve tried out all the games on offer in Puzzmo, but Crossword is the only one I’ve clicked with. Fortunately I’ve really clicked with it, currently keeping a 53 day streak going!

Just as Zach Gage did with Good Sudoku, Crossword adds enough clever little tweaks and helpers onto an existing game that I was finally able to learn to enjoy the underlying game in a way I’d always wanted to. Adding lines to show where spaces will break up multi-word answers is a great addition, but the hint system is the real key here.

Every crossword clue also provides you with an optional hint. It took me a few games before I started taking advantage of these, instead trying to clear each puzzle with a perfect “no hint” result. However the interplay between hint usage and time penalty adds a great opportunity for strategy. Each hint adds 30 seconds onto your timer, so if you’re taking more than 30 seconds to work out a clue, you likely would have been better off in the long run taking the time hit earlier with the hint.

With that in mind, more strategy comes with the location of the word that you want a hint for, where a hint spent on a long word that intersects multiple others will probably end up being more valuable than a short word off in a corner. This combined means that when I play now, I’m rushing my way through the crosswords, strategically looking for the next clue that I think I have the best change of solving, and if none are left, looking for the next best place to spend a hint while it’s still worth my time to do so. Not really how I expected to approach a crossword game, but a lot of fun!

One other note on Crossword is that they did show difficulties early on, but these have since gone away. Though it was nice to have an idea of what you might be in for, my wife and I often found they didn’t match up with our experiences, so I think removing them is the right call. With the hints being on a range of international topics, and the puzzles changing daily and presumably not having a huge amount of testing data, I can absolutely see how subjective a difficult rating would end up being.

obviously u can take me with a grain of salt if u know my tastes,,, but for however badly vivec is laid out, or however weird it is that a bunch of white guys from maryland keep trying to do meaningful commentary on imperialism but their main nuance is to make the occupied peoples Xenophobic and Supremacist, or however overly small and unmotivated the soundtrack is, this rly does come closer then just about anything else to fulfilling the Promise of the computer rpg world. definitely not necessarily the computer rpg, its not really reactive enough for that...but when i first found out about skyrim as a Young Child, the promise that was made that intoxicated me was that i was going to enter an entire world, believable and living, which was my playground but that existed apart from me. currently i do think the Open World is probably best served by less traditional games...eastshade, lil gator game, even death stranding use their spaces for more Big Expressive Ideas then simply to emulate some kind of Reality thru compromised shorthand. but morrowind nails on the goldest possible version of itself...a small island, culturally and politically dense and self-sufficient but still involved in larger conflicts, extremely diverse in terms of aesthetics but all feeling coherent anyway. u see where they get their food, where those who want to get away from everyone else live, where the centers of local and occupational government are, the slow errosion of any imperial structures the further away you are from seyda neen. and the granular growth of the RPG Journey is equally intoxicating...the emphasis on pure Numbers rather then real-time skill is a roadblock to some, but its the main thing that sells your progression...the way it fundamentally feels to do things is appreciably different at the start and end of the game. the faction quests in particular were a huge highlight for me, very simple moment to moment, but their cumulative effect is way more impactful then anything i can recall from skyrim.

when open world games let me keep playing past the completion of the main quest, my main way to achieve closure before the uninstall is to simply walk all the way back to the starting area, preferably to the place i first took control. i aim to do this without any fast travel or consulting the map if possible. in some games this is more feasible then others, but morrowind is perfect for it. in doing so i passed thru some of the first roads i ever walked thru, the first big city i found, the first imperial outpost i found, the first ancestral tomb i raided before giving up on tomb raiding and becoming religious out of penance, the little town where i met the first memorably weird npc who gave me a quest, and finally the place where i killed my first mudcrab. it was, genuinely, a greatly emotionally pregnant experience. the main quest is great honestly, and i love how it ends framing itself as basically a superhero origin story for your character. but more then anything, it felt like My adventure. my aforementioned religious penance, the time i spent adventuring in the bitter coast and west gash before ever going to balmora, the way i slowly clawed my way up to the top of house redornan (which started full of hostile ashlanders and ended with me having a mansion and every guard fawning over me), the way i stumbled into a levitation artifact about halfway through my playthrough that i used up till the end of the game, the way being the nerevarine caused a crisis of faith which had me embracing my new self but still holding onto my temple beliefs stubbornly, and the way that the ordinators that were supposed to be killing me for being a heretic ended up mostly killing me for stealing their sacred armor. i dont think any other of this Kind of rpg has given me these kinds of memories, not even my beloved new vegas. wealth beyond measure indeed.

Personally I wish I spent less of my 20s completing games like this but I guess it was a pretty entertaining time. Fun to go through the radiated parts and try to like, find crap. Crap-finding simulator... I remember wearing a hard hat and like, jumping along underpasses.

All i wanted while playing this was to be oxenFree of having to play it